Rap Exposing Poor Living Conditions Gets Russian Soldier 'Exiled'

A Russian soldier’s rap video exposing the dirty condition of his St. Petersburg barracks may have backfired. The army lieutenant has been exiled to the Russian Far East after posting his video on the Russian equivalent of YouTube, the BBC reported.

The song, “A Letter to the Minister of Defense,” is set to the tune of rapper Eminem’s “Stan,” and in it the soldier complains of the wretched state of his barracks. He laments the peeling walls, filthy bathrooms and moldy showers at his base.

The video features footage of the squalid living conditions, and recounts an email he wrote to the Russian Defense Minister asking what happened to the mortgages promised to soldiers for places to live, the BBC reported.

The soldier wants to know why his letter never received a reply.

The Russian army in response sent the soldier to Ussuriysk, a coal-mining town nine hours by air from Moscow.

Many soldiers sympathized with the rapper’s message, but critics complained the music video damaged the image of the Russian army.

The video, posted on RuTube, has drawn hundreds of comments.

Poor living conditions play a big role in the hundreds of suicides and desertions every year that plague the Russian army, the BBC reported.

Click here to read more on this story and to watch the video at BBC.co.uk.